Police Review, What’s Behind: Ilayathalapathy Vijay’s Tamil film Theri is dubbed into Telugu as Police. Taken over by Dil Raju for marketing and business of the movie in two Telugu states, Police has hit the screens today. Directed by Atlee of Raja Rani fame, the film has Samanta, Amy Jackson in female leads. Let’s get further into the actual review.
Police Story: Joseph Kuruvilla (Vijay) lives in Kerala with little daughter Baby Nivi (Nainika) running a small bakery business. Joseph stays away from local feuds and police leading a peaceful life. However, Baby’s school teacher Annie (Amy Jackson) finds Joseph as something extraordinary and begins to trace the flashback thus revealing Joseph as none other than DCP Vijay Kumar (Vijay). Who is Vijay Kumar? What is his love story and married life with Dr. Mithra (Samanta)? What is the rivalry between Vijay Kumar and Local Minister (Mahendran)? Why is Vijay Kumar leaving away in Kerala?
Police Artists and Technicians: A talented Atlee picked up a regular formulaic commercial storyline with a predictable screenplay, playing it safe with Vijay. In fact, the story and screenplay had all those shades from Rajinikanth Basha to Balakrishna Samarasimha Reddy to Chiranjeevi Indra and so on. At a time when such obsolete stories aren’t encouraged in Telugu, the same being tried in Tamil is really a bit shocking. ‘Police’ offered little or zero novelty in etching the scenes. A below average Telugu viewers can foretell on what’s happening next. There are four to five occasions like IT employee molestation followed by mind blowing interval block, orphaned child eating chocolate before side villain’s dead body where Atlee’s directorial brilliance was strongly visible. Dialogues were just all right. George C William’s camera work is top notch capturing the scenic landscapes of Kerala making the visuals rich, colorful and pompous. Anthony’s editing could have been sharper in second half wherein boredom creeps on. GV Prakash’s typical musical notes elevating the heroism was good while songs aren’t great. Production standards from Dil Raju and Kalaipuli S Thanu are brilliant.
On to performances, Vijay is a hero with limitations as an artist. There are few signature scenes of Vijay which are sure to impress masses. His building of emotional connection before every action block proved to be a sensitive and worthwhile effort. Samanta has fit rightly into a tailor made character reminding Asin in ‘Ghazini.’ Amy Jackson hasn’t got any scope. Baby Nainika was lively. Her conversations with Vijay are witty and touching. Mahendra is a weak villain by any Telugu standards. Radhika Sarath Kumar is over emoting. Prabhu is underused. Rest may not need a mention.
Police Rating Analysis: Basic drawback pulling ‘Police’ from a truly successful product is outmoded storyline coupled with moth-eaten screenplay. After showing enough promise with a marvelously scripted ‘Raja Rani,’ this isn’t a wise selection from standards of Atlee. A larger than life hero living an ordinary life blanketing his original identity and action, drama filled revenge coupled with flashback is yet again recycled.
In the process of pushing heroism to peaks, Atlee gave a toss for logical reasoning keeps on prolonging the proceedings with 158 minutes of lengthy storytelling. Right from frame no 1, everything looks like a rip-off from one or the other commercial template used earlier in Telugu industry. Here and there, Atlee used his intelligence to make the film vigorous and one such goose bumping episode is the interval block.
Into the first half, Vijay showed Pawan Kalyan traits in school episode (Gabbar Singh) followed by ‘Naayak’ inspired child labor sub plot driven into romantic track with Samanta, which was dramatic. Just before the interval, hero-villain confrontation was awesome. Second half is familiarly opened to viewers’ routine assumptions. Completing the tragic flashback and bringing the hero-villain back on game leads to climax. Coupling the cute Baby Nainika episodes added some pleasure.
All in all, ‘Police’ suffers with severe drawbacks in a known story and formulaic police instances. Atlee’s narration was decent but missed in much needed excitement or blood curling emotional stuff. This pushes CJ to rate ‘Police’ with 2.5 stars. Little more innovation could have saved the day for Atlee. Commercial verdict has to be wait and seen.
Police Cinejosh Verdict: Weak Content – Peak Heroism
Police Cinejosh Rating: 2.5/5.0
Reviewed by Srivaas